Charity selection links

From Bogleheads
Jump to: navigation, search

Regardless of the methods by which an individual contributes to charity (e.g., direct gifts, donor advised funds), selection of the organizations deserving support is a daunting task. The choices are primarily influenced by personal beliefs and preferences, but the charity selection links below may provide some guidance.

Tax deductibility

If an individual in the U.S. is itemizing their income tax deductions, some charitable contributions are eligible to be deducted. There are regulations regarding the form, valuation, documentation, and recipient of the contribution. Not all tax exempt organizations can receive tax deductible contributions. (For example, political campaigns are generally tax exempt, but contributions to them are not tax deductible.)

Information about tax-exempt organizations, including those eligible to receive tax-deductible charitable organizations, can be done online by using the IRS's Exempt Organizations Select Check.[1][2] You may search for organizations that:

  • Are eligible to receive tax-deductible charitable contributions (Publication 78 data). Users may rely on this list in determining deductibility of contributions (just as they did when Publication 78 was a separate electronic publication rather than part of Select Check).
  • Have had their tax-exempt status automatically revoked under the law because they have not filed Form 990 series returns or notices annually as required for three consecutive years.
  • Have filed a Form 990-N (e-Postcard) annual electronic notice. (Most small organizations whose annual gross receipts are normally $50,000 or less are required to electronically submit Form 990-N, unless they choose instead to file a completed Form 990 or Form 990-EZ).

In addition, you may verify an organization's tax-exempt status and eligibility to receive tax-deductible charitable contributions by asking to see an organization's IRS letter recognizing it as tax-exempt. You may also confirm an organization's status by calling the IRS (toll-free) at 1-877-829-5500.[2]


  1. The IRS no longer publishes Publication 78, Cumulative List of Organizations described in Section 170(c) of the Internal Revenue Code.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Search for Charities, from the IRS.

External links

Charity evaluators

Forum discussions